Shohei Ohtani (LA Angels), who doubles as a pitcher, is commanding the Major League (MLB) stage with a modified slider’Sweeper’ at the beginning of the 2023 season.
Ohtani showed an insignificant response to this tool, saying, “I have never learned from anyone in particular. It is a pitch that I have been throwing since I was playing in Japan.”
On the 12th (Korean time), Ohtani started against the Washington Nationals in the 2022 Major League Baseball (MLB) held at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California, USA.
Ohtani scored his second win (undefeated) of the season as the Angels beat Washington 2-0 with Anthony Rendon’s final sacrifice hit in the bottom of the 4th and Logan Ohapi’s wedge solo shot in the bottom of the 6th.
Ohtani pitched less than two runs in 10 consecutive games against the Toronto Blue Jays on August 28 of last year, breaking the previous club record set by Nolan Ryan in 1972-1973. In addition, he also lowered his season earned run average to 0.47, ranking 6th overall in the major leagues.
Ohtani, who led Japan to victory in the 2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC), which ended last month, is not experiencing any aftereffects. Rather, he is showing a more perfect season start than usual. This season is the first time Ohtani has posted an earned run average in the 0-point range in his first three games since entering the major leagues in 2018.
Even last year, when he recorded the most 15 wins in an individual season, he recorded 1 win, 2 losses, and an ERA of 4.40, twice failing to pitch 5 innings in the first 3 games.
Ohtani’s pitching was shaken enough to record 6 balls on 4 balls in a row against the Seattle Mariners on the 6th and against Washington on the same day, but he allowed 1 run and no runs, respectively.
American and Japanese media paid attention to ‘Sweeper’ as a reason for his good fight. 스포츠토토
A sweeper, a type of transformation slider, curves sideways instead of down. The major leagues included the sweeper as a slider until last year, but classified it as a new pitch this year.
Ohtani’s sweeper usage rate has increased significantly this season. Even against Washington, 51 out of 92 pitches were sweepers. In addition, he threw fastballs (16), sinkers (12), cutters (5), sliders (4), splitters (3), and curveballs (1), dazzling Washington hitters in a number fight.